Daily Photo: Curving Composition

Basil and Bella share a bit of sunlight.
Basil and Bella share a bit of sunlight.

Basil and Bella both fit themselves into this one ray of sunlight and create a lovely series of curves and negative space with the lamp and the fountain. This isn’t from today, when we had about three minutes of sun after days of none at all, but from last week when it was fairly plentiful. The two may spend the entire day in totally different spaces, Bella in the basement on mousewatch and Basil on the bed with the boys, but they often manage to get together and share a quiet moment.

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From Instagram

These photos are from today when we did have about three minutes of sunlight. Mimi and I went outside and enjoyed it while it lasted, then came right back in.

Shadow puzzle with Mimi.

Shadow puzzle with Mimi.
Shadow puzzle with Mimi.

We had about three minutes of sun today and made the most of it. Mimi has a very long tail.

Mimi with a long tail.
Mimi with a long tail.

Wishful thinking. They want me to turn the furnace on. It’s Mimi’s three boys, and If you look at the bottom left you’ll see Mimi. I’m still reorganizing art after my show. They enjoy the maze of boxes.

Wishful thinking.
Wishful thinking.

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What other photos have I shared on or around this date?

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Sisters From Another Mother
Napping in a box.
Napping in a box.

Bella has been persistently working to be Ophelia’s friend, but Little O is timid and uncertain. Finally, a shared box and a nap. They’ve put their heads together. Should those brothers be concerned? I’ve been heartened to see Ophelia mixing more with the rest of the household. As for her brother, he’s got them giving him baths.

The temperature is low today but the sun was high, and Mimi and I had a brief time outside to photograph a new product and kind of hang out an enjoy it all.

Mimi approves!
Mimi approves!

I haven’t been able to post as usual, but that actually means I’m pretty busy! This is the paper that Hamlet supervised last week and I’m really excited it came out well. I have it available on Portraits of Animals!

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From November 2015

Those amber eyes.
Those amber eyes.

Goodness, doesn’t he have the most amazing eyes? It’s difficult to capture the amber of Basil’s eyes without a lot of light to illuminate them, but the wind blew most of the leaves away and all this beautiful daylight is streaming in. I see them best each day when he comes up to me in the morning looking for love and breakfast, even if the light is dim, and I tried best to capture his eyes in the light from the window.

And one white whisker.
And one white whisker.

This morning we did a little something different—everyone had to wait for breakfast and Basil and I took off in the car to a veterinarian’s office. I’ve been tracking some odd symptoms in him for the past few months and talking to my veterinarian, at first just an occasional cough, a sneeze, a wheeze, snoring when he sleeps, but increasing coughing and a reverse sneeze that sounds like a duck quacking, and Basil seeming a little traumatized by his own noises. I think it’s something Basil has been carrying all along, and it may have been part of the reason he took so long to socialize, compensating for an amount of discomfort. I was considering a nasal polyp, though he’s a little old for that, some other herpes-related growth or infection, allergies, asthma, even heart disease.

He often has a little bit of his tongue showing.
He often has a little bit of his tongue showing.

A couple of weeks ago he missed a meal after increased coughing and we agreed he had a herpes virus and it could be the dampness related to that. Everyone gets extra supplements for health and immune support because I foster cats who often have viral infections, herpes infections or other afflictions, and the population in the household is a little stressful sometimes. I increased the lysine in his food and he responded right away with a near complete absence of any symptoms. Then yesterday morning he suddenly coughed and hacked, then later regurgitated a portion of his breakfast, then vomited the rest and began gasping and wheezing. I almost ran him to the emergency hospital right away but in making arrangements he calmed enough to call my veterinarian and to call around for another veterinarian who could do x-rays. He is a foster, and our organization works with a few veterinarians. He hid under my bed after vomiting again, and I put him in a carrier for his own safety, and so I wouldn’t have to hunt him down if we had to run quickly. Jelly Bean, who always provides comfort when Basil is traumatized about something, stayed with him, purring into his carrier. Teddy Bear, who is Basil’s first formerly feral foster kitten and who Basil has mentored and calmed when frightened, provided comic relief.

Bean and Teddy Bear provided comfort while Basil was in the carrier.
Bean and Teddy Bear provided comfort while Basil was in the carrier.

Because he might need to be sedated for an exam, we decided to wait until first thing this morning. Basil was a very, very brave boy along with some flower essences and the wonderful staff at the veterinarian’s office. He only meowed very loudly, but never made any aggressive act or tried to escape, and they managed to get one x-ray that showed his airways were inflamed and areas of his lungs were cloudy. The vet noted he had mild asthma, and right now had an episode that should be taken care of.

Giuseppe stayed with Basil after I let him out of the carrier.
Giuseppe stayed with Basil after I let him out of the carrier.

So we talked about the possible causes, including seasonal allergens which are hard to avoid. Environmental allergens we are pretty good on avoiding scented or strong cleaning products, smoke of any sort and scented things. I gave up clay litter a decade ago knowing from artist friends that clay is a fine particulate and can damage mucous membranes, and I use wood or recycled newspaper pellets so there is no dust. But things we are not so good on like my pastel dust, paper dust from framing and art papers, and my very damp basement—and when my vet and I discussed that a couple of weeks ago I realized that’s probably the main culprit as it began when the wet basement began in the spring, continued over summer, cleared up when the basement dried up, and recurred with a vengeance when we recently had rain. And on top of that I found a gently used cat tree on trash night and put it in the basement so they had a place to hang out, and Basil loves it and has been spending more time than usual down there.

Bella and Basil looking regal.
Bella and Basil looking regal.

So we’ve begun with a corticosteroid shot to see if it helps him recover from this incident and I will continue with some acupuncture and Chinese herbs and keep track of how he’s feeling and what seems to aggravate it. It’s hard to catch this at just the right time, and a trip to the vet a few days from now might show nothing. I’m glad I finally have an initial diagnosis for what’s happening with him, and I hope I can find what makes him uncomfortable, and what makes him comfortable. I’ll write more about feline asthma soon.

Sweet basil.
Sweet basil.

. . . . . . .

What other photos have I shared on or around this date?

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Wordless Wednesday: Smoky in the Mirror
black kitten
Don’t you just want to take him home?
Crouching under the lights to keep warm.
Crouching under the lights to keep warm.

Now that it’s gotten cold, my poor neglected felines have to resort to cuddling together under my work lights to keep warm. Mimi, Mewsette and Giuseppe make sure to soak up every drop of heat from my compact fluorescents (good luck with that), along with every drop of light.

I think we could fit another cat or possibly two kittens on this table. I guess I’m glad I’m working at my computer and not trying to draw at my drawing table tonight.

Finally, they get to nap.
Finally, they get to nap.

. . . . . . .

What other photos have I shared on or around this date?

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Today’s Array, With Variations, 2014
black cats
Smokie has apparently been put on alert to watch me so that everyone else can have a nap.

It seems Sunshine has told Smokie to sit up and watch me so everyone can have a nap. Smokie is very alert!

Especially now that days are getting short and kind of chilly, my house panthers are always happy to settle on the cabinet in the middle of the kitchen. Ever since the cabinet has been in this spot cats have been gathering there. It’s bright and warm, food is generally imminent, and if all else fails they can watch the human at whatever she’s doing. I have always loved to turn around and see them there, whoever and however many have decided to supervise me. I’m also pleased to see Smokie and Bella joined in this habit, and that they are well-mannered in the kitchen after some early leaps onto the stove and into the sink, and that they feel they are a part of a feline family, and all this despite their difficult beginnings.

Below, this is what I saw each time I turned around, or at least each time I could gt a photo. Under Bean’s sleepy supervision, Bella keeps an alert watch on my activities.

black cats
Bella is being very good with Bean as her sleepy supervisor.

Mewsette comes to join and Bella greets her with a sisterly forehead lick.

black cats
Bella greets Mewsette with a forehead lick.

After being outdoors with me for a while, Mimi takes her post of kitten-watching, though she’s clearly not pleased. Smokie and Bella are especially good.

black cats
Mimi takes a little time to supervise the kids, though she feels she’s had enough of that.

Apparently I’m soporifically dull as I’ve managed to put all four of them into a stupor. Mr. Sunshine has joined the group and, though he’s been the least enthusiastic about our fosters, generally ignoring them, he tucked himself right in between Smokie and Bella.

black cats
Mr. Sunshine gives Smokie some instructions to keep an eye on me…

 

. . . . . . .

Don’t forget that Smokie and Bella are both up for adoption, now that their ninja training has been completed. I can’t make them look any more cute, sweet, playful, social, affectionate and otherwise adoptable than they already appear in every photo. They are available through PittsburghCAT, and if you are interested let me know and I’ll send you an adoption application.

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Doing the Twist, 2013
two black cats bathing each other
A whirly bath.

Mewsette and Bean bathe each others’ hard-to-reach spots. They do this all the time and it’s one of the times I truly wish they weren’t all black. No matter how I’ve photographed them, even using the flash, I can’t capture their utter cuteness. They just walk up to each other and start licking each others’ faces and go from there. Of course, sometimes it transforms into a wrestling match like the photo “Tense Moments” below, and there are times someone is just not in the mood, but most of the time it’s just a part of their day.

And then there are the really special ones, like the old arm-around-the-shoulder-brotherly-hug, especially when another brother photobombs.

“Dude,” Giuseppe says, “you’re not fat. And just because you have those white spots, I’ll still be your friend.”

“You two make me want to puke,” says Mr. Sunshine as he hurries past.

Brothers.

two black cats hugging
A little paw around the shoulder.

. . . . . . .

More Incriminating Pawprints, 2012
closeup of white pawprints on wood
A closeup of the pawprints.

Pawprints! In white paint! Right across the edge of the kitchen cabinet leading from…

pawprints, white paint and white painted item
Pawprints, paint and white object.

…the item I’d just painted white and set down on the stool to rinse my brush and my hands. So fast! Who could it be?

black cat looking guilty
Mimi looking guilty.

Didn’t expect it to be Mimi? Yes, there was white paint on her paws, and she does look guilty. But I can hardly blame her—I know she jumps right up on that stool as soon as she runs into the kitchen and I should have found a better place to set down the tray I’d painted. I think she’s more miffed at getting paint on her paws than I am having her walk on a freshly-painted item!

This is one reason I rarely work on these projects anywhere but in my studio, and why I make sure all my art materials are AP non-toxic.

And for now, I’ve left Mimi’s creation. Who can’t use a row of pawprints down the edge of a counter, even if they are a little smudged? Here’s another incriminating pawprint by Mewsette.

. . . . . . .

What’s This? 2011
two black cats staring at something
What’s this?

Whatever it was it must have been really icky because neither of them would touch it—Giuseppe even has one paw lifted—though I never saw anything in the spot where they were looking.

Really? I think Giuseppe and Jelly Bean were playing a game with me because they both dropped the subject, stood up and were ready for action when I stood up to take a closer look at whatever it was that had them totally preoccupied. Ha ha, mom, it’s like the ceiling game! Humans are so predictable.


Gifts featuring cats you know! Visit Portraits of Animals

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Blue Pitcher With Cat
Blue Pitcher With Cat

I have to say, I do like it, Mr. Sunshine, subtle, almost abstract. I have some talented cats here. I do like the photos that show all the assets of my beautiful cats, but I also like the abstract shots that happen to have a cat in them in a very artful way. Read more and purchase.


All images and text used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission, although links to your site are more than welcome and are shared. Please ask if you are interested in using and image or story in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of an image or a product including it, check my animal and nature website Portraits of Animals to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.

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Bernadette

From health and welfare to rescue and adoption stories, advocacy and art, The Creative Cat offers both visual and verbal education and entertainment about cats for people who love cats. From catchy and creative headlines to factual articles and fictional stories, The Creative Cat provides constant entertainment and important information to people who love cats, pets and animals of all species.

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